“Vibe” Revisits the Story That Inspired “The Fast and the Furious”

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It’s been 15 years since the first The Fast and the Furious film came out. At the time, nobody really knew how it’d do. The cast was young and diverse, and the story had a niche vibe to it. Nobody expected it to be a blockbuster, but it soared at the box office, and it was all thanks to a couple guys named Kenneth Li and Rafael Estevez.

You see, the story was actually essentially rented from Li after he had written a story about New York City racing culture for Vibe. That story focused on Estevez and his illegal street-racing group of imports. It was called Racer X, and it chronicled building the car to getting into the streets and racing it. Unfortunately, Li didn’t get paid that much.

Now, seven films later, Vibe brought the two back together to discuss how it all came to be, and why they did it.

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